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Germany argue over nuclear shutdown

Germany is considering shutting down its last three nuclear power plants as planned this year due to growing concerns about a potential Russian gas cutoff. The Economy Ministry announced a new "stress test" on the security of electricity supply in mid-July that seemed to open a crack for some sort of extension. An earlier test, conducted in May, found that supplies were guaranteed. The new test is supposed to consider a tougher scenario.

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During the war in Ukraine, Russian natural gas supplies to Germany have been reduced to 20% of capacity through Nord Stream 1. The issue was cited as a political power play, according to Germany. There is concern that Russia may shut off Germany's gas supply altogether, as it provides about a third of Germany's gas supply.

A nuclear plant extension has become a frequent demand by the main opposition Union bloc. Chancellor Olaf Scholz's pro-business Free Democrats are making similar calls.

Christian Lindner, the leader of the Free Democrats, told Bild am Sonntag that "a lot speaks in favor of keeping the safe and climate-friendly nuclear power plants operational until 2024." In a statement, he asked Economy Minister Robert Habeck to stop burning gas to generate electricity.

1st August 2022


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